Saturday, March 18, 2017

The Horsingdon Transmissions No. 77: Black Veils

In 1893, James Boreham married Miriam Belmarsh of Bradford. The above image is the only known photograph of Miriam. Whilst her attire here is distinctly funereal, the photograph apparently depicts Miriam in her wedding dress. Accounts from the period note that Miriam was rarely seen in public; when she was, her face was always covered by a heavy black veil.

As part of his investigations into what he referred - rather cryptically - as the 'supramundane provenance' of the Boreham family, Roland Franklyn undertook extensive genealogical research into the Belmarsh line. Unable to unearth a family of that name - or any record of a Miriam Belmarsh - in the Bradford parish registries of the 1800s, Franklyn concluded that James Boreham had, for some reason, deemed it expedient to fabricate not only an entire familial history for his new wife, but probably her name also.

James and Miriam Boreham begat a number of offspring, only two of which survived to adulthood: Edward Boreham, and Judith Boreham - who appears in the curious photograph of the Old Lodge from a few days ago; other than in the aforementioned mystifying image, Judith - like her mother - was always veiled when seen in public. All record of Edward and Judith seem to have been erased in the aftermath of James Boreham's disappearance/suspected death, such that the particulars regarding the life and times of these mysterious individuals - and the equally occluded lineage of their mother - remains purely speculative.

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